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verb de·scend \di-ˈsend, dē-\

Simple Definition of descend

  • : to go down : to go or move from a higher to a lower place or level

  • : to slope or lead downward

  • : to go or change to a worse state or condition

Full Definition of descend

  1. intransitive verb
  2. 1 :  to pass from a higher place or level to a lower one <descended from the platform>

  3. 2 :  to pass in discussion from what is logically prior or more comprehensive

  4. 3 a :  to originate or come from an ancestral stock or source :  derive <descends from an old merchant family> b :  to pass by inheritance <a desk that has descended in the family> c :  to pass by transmission <songs descended from old ballads>

  5. 4 :  to incline, lead, or extend downward <the road descends to the river>

  6. 5 a :  to swoop or pounce down (as in a sudden attack) b :  to appear suddenly and often disconcertingly as if from above <reporters descended on the candidate>

  7. 6 :  to proceed in a sequence or gradation from higher to lower or from more remote to nearer or more recent

  8. 7 a :  to lower oneself in status or dignity :  stoop b :  to worsen and sink in condition or estimation

  9. transitive verb
  10. 1 :  to pass, move, or climb down or down along

  11. 2 :  to extend down along

de·scend·ible play \-ˈsen-də-bəl\ adjective

Examples of descend

  1. Wait for the elevator to descend.

  2. The workers descended into the hole.

  3. A herd of goats descended into the valley.

  4. The airplane will descend to a lower altitude soon.

  5. Descending the mountain was even more dangerous than climbing it.

  6. The children descended the staircase silently.

  7. The path descends to the river.

  8. The stairs descended into the tunnel.

Origin of descend

Middle English, from Anglo-French descendre, from Latin descendere, from de- + scandere to climb — more at scan

First Known Use: 13th century

Medical Dictionary


intransitive verb de·scend \di-ˈsend\

Medical Definition of descend

  1. :  to pass from a higher place or level to a lower one <normally the testicle descends into the scrotum between the seventh and ninth month in utero—Therapeutic Notes>

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February 7, 2016

a slight offense

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